When you receive your first NDIS plan it can be an empowering moment but also an overwhelming one. Where do you begin? Managing your NDIS plan and ensuring you access the right support can be complicated and time consuming. That’s where a support coordinator and a plan manager come in. Both can help you navigate your NDIS journey in different ways.
How can a support coordinator help me?
A support coordinator can help you develop the skills you need to use your plan to achieve your goals, live more independently and participate more fully in your community. Support coordinators are funded through the NDIS to work with individuals who have high support needs or who don’t have access to a local area coordinator.
A support coordinator can help you:
- explain how your NDIS plan works and help you understand what fund options are available to you to choose from
- connect you to service providers in your area
- negotiating with your providers on which services they will offer that would benefit you and how much it will cost from your funding
- putting you in touch with the local places where you could potentially meet people and be active in your community.
- organise assessments
- negotiate services and prices
- manage your NDIS plan budget
- resolve any crisis in relation to your plan.
There are a lot of benefits to having a support coordinator. There is no compulsion for using a Support Coordinator under the NDIS, but there are benefits in engaging someone in someone you trust.
A good Support Coordinator would be able to optimise your NDIS funding and make sure you get the most value and benefit out of your plan. They will also help you make decisions over the services you receive, so you get the support you want.
When you visit your support coordinator, there are some attributes you can look for that would help you find the right one for you. They always put you first when it comes to looking for someone who partners with you, respects your choices and is flexible enough to meet your needs
They are outcome focused and are motivated to help you achieve your goals, with involvement a lot of thinking and planning.They know your locality and area and know which one would be the right fit for you. They should have knowledge or all the options available. They want you to learn and know about things. Knowledge sharing also shows that your support coordinator is interested in going beyond the work and taking efforts to tell you about NDIS.
They should have amazing communication skills that would help them to write reports to the NDIS on your behalf and communicate what would work and what would not work. Good reading, writing and communication skills are important!
Having the right health care support coordinator can help you get the most out of the NDIS. For more details on NDIS, Please check this page
How can a plan manager help me ?
A plan manager organises and manages the financial aspects of your plan. The NDIS offers a number of different options for managing your NDIS funding package. You can choose to manage it yourself, ask the NDIA to manage it, engage a plan manager or a mix of all three. If you choose a plan manager, the NDIS will fund them as part of your plan. Your plan manager will:
- receive invoices and pay providers for the supports you purchase
- keep track of your funds
- create service agreements between you and your support providers
- make claims for reimbursement through the NDIS myplace portal
- produce monthly financial statements.
Choosing a plan manager gives you greater flexibility and control over the service providers you choose. It also takes the hassle out of dealing with financial admin.
How do I choose a support coordinator or plan manager?
Since the implementation of the NDIS in 2016, there has been huge growth in the disability services sector. It can be difficult to know which service provider to choose.
When choosing a support coordinator or plan manager you need to consider the following questions:
- Is the health support coordinator or plan manager impartial?
- If their business also offers support services, do they have a robust conflict of interest policy?
- Do they communicate clearly in words you can understand?
- How much experience do they have in the disability sector?
- How well do they know the NDIS?
- Do they have a good rapport with you?
- Is your provider focused on helping you achieve your goals?
A good support coordinator or plan manager will have intimate knowledge of the NDIS and be focused on achieving the best support outcomes for you. Speak to us now about your own needs and let us help you find the right support person for you.